Women health

 Lupus kidney infection

People with systemic lupus erythematosus, or lupus, frequently develop lupus nephritis as a consequence.

An autoimmune disorder is lupus. Autoantibodies, which are proteins produced by your immune system, attack your own tissues and organs, including the kidneys, as a result of this.

Whenever lupus autoantibodies damage waste-filtering kidney structures, lupus nephritis develops. This results in kidney inflammation and can cause kidney damage, kidney failure, high blood pressure, protein in the urine, blood in the urine, and kidney inflammation.

What precisely is lupus nephritis?

Systemic lupus erythematosus (also known as lupus) is a kind of kidney disease that can lead to lupus nephritis. An autoimmune disease, or one in which the body's immune system targets its own cells and organs, is lupus. Lupus-related kidney damage may deteriorate over time and result in renal failure. You will require dialysis or a kidney transplant to stay healthy if your kidneys start to fail.

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How do your kidneys function?

The primary function of the kidneys is to filter surplus water and waste from your blood and produce urine. The kidneys balance the salts and minerals that circulate in the blood, including calcium, phosphorus, sodium, and potassium, to keep your body functioning properly. Additionally, your kidneys produce hormones that keep your bones healthy, regulate blood pressure, and produce red blood cells.

Who is prone to lupus?

Women are far more likely than males to have lupus, and it typically occurs during the years when they are carrying children. Lupus affects nine out of ten women. Additionally, those with African or Asian ancestry are more likely to get lupus. Lupus is around two to three times more common among African Americans and Asian Americans than in Caucasians.1 In the US, one in 250 African American women will get lupus.

How prevalent is lupus nephritis?

One of the more frequent medical issues brought on by lupus is kidney impairment. Up to 5 out of 10 persons with lupus have renal damage. Kidney damage affects eight out of ten lupus-affected youngsters.

Who has a higher risk of developing lupus nephritis?

Asian Americans, Hispanics, and African Americans are more prone than Caucasians to acquire lupus nephritis.4 Men experience lupus nephritis more frequently than women do.

What signs and symptoms of lupus nephritis?

Foamy urine and edema, which is when your body retains too much fluid and typically affects your legs, feet, or ankles but less frequently your hands or face, are signs of lupus nephritis. Additionally, you can experience elevated blood pressure.

ALSO READ: 8 Natural Daily Ways to Cleanse Your Kidney

It's common for kidney issues to begin concurrently with or soon after lupus symptoms, and they can include:

  • Edema or joint pain
  • Aching muscles
  • Unidentified reason for the fever

a red also called a rash that appears frequently on the face, usually across the nose and cheeks

The form of a butterfly causes a rash.

What tests are used by medical practitioners to identify lupus nephritis?

A kidney biopsy, blood testing, and urine analysis are used to diagnose lupus nephritis.

Test of urine

A urine sample is used by your doctor to check for blood and protein in your pee. In a doctor's office or lab, you obtain a urine sample and place it in a container. A nurse or technician administers the test by dipping a dipstick—a strip of chemically treated paper—into the urine. When blood or protein is present, the color of certain patches on the dipstick changes. Kidney injury is indicated by a high quantity of protein or a high concentration of red blood cells in the urine. Additionally, a microscope will be used to look for kidney cells in the urine.

Blood Tests

Your doctor does a blood test to evaluate the health of your kidneys. A blood test measures creatinine, a byproduct of your body's regular breakdown of muscles. Your kidneys filter the blood of creatinine. Your glomerular filtration rate (GFR) can be calculated by medical professionals using the amount of creatinine in your blood. The level of creatinine rises as renal disease worsens.

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A kidney biopsy

During a kidney biopsy, a small sample of kidney tissue is removed for microscopic examination. In a hospital setting, a clinician does the biopsy while employing imaging methods to direct the biopsy needle into the kidney, such as ultrasound or computed tomography (CT) scanning. During the treatment, medical personnel will numb the area to lessen your pain and may also use light sedation.

A pathologist—a medical professional with expertise in illness diagnosis—examines the kidney tissue in a lab setting.

An imaging test of the kidney can:

  • Confirm the presence of lupus nephritis
  • Determine the disease's stage of development
  • Orient treatment

For those with active lupus nephritis symptoms who have not yet received treatment, the American College of Rheumatology advises biopsies. Your kidneys might be protected by early detection and timely treatment.

How are doctors treating lupus nephritis?

In order to stop your immune system from attacking and harming your kidneys, medical practitioners treat lupus nephritis with medications that inhibit it. Treatment objectives include:

  • Decreasing renal inflammation
  • Decreased immune system response
  • Prevent your body's immune system from immediately targeting or creating
  • Antigens that target the kidneys


Your doctor may advise you to take a corticosteroid, typically prednisone, as well as an immune system suppressants like cyclophosphamide or mycophenolate mofetil as well as the SLE drug hydroxychloroquine.

Some persons with lupus nephritis have high blood pressure. You could require more than one.

Medication for blood pressure regulation. Blood pressure medications include:

  • Drugs whose names end in -pril or -sartan include ACE inhibitors and ARBs. Diuretics.
  • A beta blocker
  • Blocking calcium channels

Your kidneys may benefit from the protection of ACE inhibitors and ARBs, while diuretics aid in the removal of fluid from the body by the kidneys.

ALSO READ: What Causes Small Blood Clots in Urine

What foods should I avoid if I have lupus nephritis?

You might need to adjust your diet if you have a kidney illness. Dietitians are nutrition specialists who may provide you advice on healthy eating and meal planning. Find a certified nutritionist who can assist you External link. You can better control renal illness by eating the correct foods. If you have high blood pressure, consuming meals lower in sodium (a component of salt) may help you lower your blood pressure.

What side effects might lupus nephritis cause?

You might not experience complications since the treatment is effective at controlling lupus nephritis.

Kidney failure affects 10 to 30% of those with lupus nephritis.6 Find out more about what transpires if your kidneys fail.

Kidney scarring can occur as a result of the most severe type of lupus nephritis, diffuse proliferative nephritis. Permanent scarring often leads to a reduction in kidney function. Long-lasting damage may be avoided with early diagnosis and treatment.

A high risk of cancer exists in those with lupus nephritis, particularly the immune system-related disease B-cell lymphoma (NIH external link). They are also highly susceptible to heart and blood vessel issues.

Why should you consider participating in a clinical trial?

At the core of all medical advancements are clinical trials, which are a component of clinical research. New approaches to preventing, diagnosing, or treating disease are examined in clinical trials. Clinical trials are also used by researchers to examine various elements of treatment, such as enhancing the quality of life for those who suffer from chronic illnesses. Find out if participating in clinical trials is a good fit for you.

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Maintain a healthy lifestyle.

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